The arrival of the Chile winger from Barcelona could indirectly provide the answer to Arsenal’s – and England’s – striking problems.
Arsenal are reportedly close to completing the signing of Alexis Sanchez.
In bringing the 25-year-old to the Emirates Stadium, manager Arsene Wenger will have pulled off a major coup.
The Gunners faced competition from Liverpool and Serie A champions Juventus in their pursuit of Sanchez, who is arguably the most in-form right winger on the planet right now.
Quite why Barcelona are willing to sell a player who scored 19 goals and provided 10 assists in 34 La Liga games last season is a bit of a mystery.
Sanchez transferred his fine club form to the international arena, scoring twice and setting up another in four appearances for Chile at the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
At around £30m, Sanchez looks like a great buy, but some could accuse Wenger of hypocrisy.
Wenger refused to re-sign creative midfielder Cesc Fabregas earlier this summer because he claimed that he had too many players in his position already.
On the surface of it, Wenger already has a Sanchez. Former Southampton man Theo Walcott is incredibly similar to the Chilean.
They are both 25-year-old speedsters who are well below 6ft and have spent the majority of their senior careers bombing up and down the right flank.
Both are excellent at running in possession and both feel more comfortable shooting than they do crossing.
Neither player has ever really settled when asked to play on the left, so how will Wenger fit Sanchez and Walcott into the same team?
The answer could be very exciting for fans of Arsenal and England alike.
Sanchez’s arrival at Arsenal should serve as confirmation that Wenger plans to deploy Walcott as a central striker next season.
It is a position that Walcott is particularly keen on, but he has seldom had the chance to play there.
Walcott began on the right wing in all nine of his Premier League starts last season, but, in the absence of Olivier Giroud, he was given the chance to play in his favoured striking role when the Gunners played Tottenham Hotspur in the FA Cup in January.
Although he did not score, Walcott impressed during the tie, creating space for Santi Cazorla’s opener in a comfortable 2-0 win.
However, he suffered a serious knee injury late on in the match and subsequently missed the rest of the season, including England’s World Cup campaign.
Walcott’s injury provided Liverpool wonderkid Raheem Sterling with the opportunity to shine in Brazil and, while England’s overall campaign was thoroughly disappointing, the 19-year-old earned very positive reviews.
Sterling went to the World Cup on the back of an excellent domestic campaign, during which he scored nine goals and made five assists in 33 Premier League outings.
The Jamaica-born youngster is only going to get better and he has to be one of the first names on England’s teamsheet for many years to come – probably on the right wing.
One of England’s main problems in Brazil was their lack of a deadly frontman. Walcott can be just that.
It is almost six years since Walcott, playing on the right after being selected ahead of David Beckham, used his lightning pace and predatory instinct to notch a superb hat-trick in England’s 4-1 win over Croatia in Zagreb.
However, he still possesses both of those raw attributes and, at 25, he has plenty of time to develop into the Michael Owen of his generation.
Forward Giroud and midfielder Aaron Ramsey were the only Gunners players to reach double figures in the Premier League last season, netting 16 and 10 goals respectively.
Operating through the middle, Walcott, if he is kept fit, could easily surpass the 20-goal mark, just as Thierry Henry did in five successive seasons during the noughties.
Like Walcott, Henry was a winger when he arrived in North London – back in August 1999.
Henry was a lot taller, but height is not an issue at Arsenal, who pride themselves on keeping the ball on the floor.
Only Fulham, Crystal Palace, Liverpool and surprisingly Stoke City, launched fewer crosses than Arsenal in the Premier League last season.
What Walcott and Henry have in common is electric pace, great movement and supreme confidence – a top striker’s Holy Trinity.
Forget all this transfer talk of Mario Balotelli, Loic Remy and all other international forwards that have a pulse, Arsenal already have the answer to their striking problems – and thrifty Wenger knows it.